My #2014 – Summerita Rhayne

I’m sharing thoughts about 2014 on Devika Fernando’s blog.
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My 2014 – Summerita Rhayne

Many thanks Devika for inviting me to share my thoughts about 2014. 

As I sit writing this post it’s 31st December on the calendar. And what pops into my mind is: Poor 2014! Or for that matter, any old year. We’re so busy ushering in the New one, we forget to say goodbye to the Old one properly. From mid December, ‘Happy New Year’ starts coming easily from everyone’s mouth. But the year gone by, the mistakes we made… we prefer to forget it all. Maybe there are some lessons hidden in there, something to be learnt from how we have been, which can make 2015 more golden?   

This is why a reflection post like this one is so opportune, a way of paying homage to The Gone Year, excuse the pun 🙂 
For me, the year 2014 brought several changes. My kids went on to higher classes which meant they became busier in studies. With the pressure of competitive exams, finding outdoor time has become problematic for them these days. Enrolling them in some activities seemed to be a good solution. It started with tennis but didn’t work out so now child no. 2 is trying out dance and finding it better fun. We missed on summer vacation. A family wedding and all the ‘big fat wedding’ factor involved did make up a bit. You could say, staying up all night and feeling like a zombie the next day is definitely a change from routine! We had a healthy discussion at my workplace whether Hindu weddings ought to be shifted to daytime. I’m afraid I’m rather old fashioned in this and despite the discomfort, prefer the romantic aura of midnight weddings! 🙂

Before this turns into a rambling post, I must share an exciting change that 2014 brought. This was my shift into self publishing. I’ve been published traditionally and loved it except for a few factors. By the way, the stint in self publishing has made me appreciate a lot what publishers do for authors. All one has to do in that case is writing the book and let them take over except where marketing is concerned. However, I have found I love self publishing even more. It gives you total control on the whole process – from writing to the moment the book is ready. I’ve learnt a LOT about that process. I share some of the rudiments here on how to publish on Amazon. Currently I’m putting out my book on Smashwords and looking into other sites. For someone who didn’t even know Word properly, though I did a three month course on it – didn’t practice much then –  to have come to design my book cover and format the book for electronic and print, it is big step forward. I learnt more about readers’ engagement, about selling on Amazon… about not obsessively checking sale reports! 😉 With my second book out, I’m making steady progress though and am hopeful. Every time a sale shows up on the graph, it makes my heart swell with pride because I have had such a big part in the creation of that work. Not all my doing of course, because it’s all thanks to the resources I had.  But still, creativity in whatever form – that’s what art is about. 

This is definitely turning into a word sprawl of a post. I’m sure this isn’t what Devika had in mind when she invited me to guest post. But I can’t leave without sharing something of even more importance. So do stick around if you don’t mind the buzz of words.  

2014 also brought a change in my ‘life’ perspective
Read the rest here:

http://www.devikafernando.com/blog/flashback-2014-for-authors-summerita-rhayne-guest-post

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Wish you all a Very Happy New Year!

Guest post by Sundari Venkatraman – Tips on being a self-publisher and being successful 

Today I have author Sundari Venkatraman on my blog. She has recently released her new book ‘The Runaway Bridegroom’ on Amazon which is her third self published book. Please welcome her for her chat about how to be a self published author and be successful in this tough market.

Take it away, Sundari! 🙂

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Thank you Summerita Rhayne for asking me about my favourite subject!

As I have mentioned during many interviews, I had tried to get my books into traditional publishing for 13 years. Later, I managed to publish one book through Indireads. But even before Double Jeopardy, I had four and a half books to my name and had published all of them as weekly series on my blog. Luckily for me, Indireads refused to publish these books for whatever reason. When Rubina Ramesh suggested self-publishing them on Amazon, I jumped at the chance. Exploring the option with help of Rasana Atreya’s blog on self-publishing, I found that it’s a very simple process where I needed to invest in a cover and editing only. After that, all I had to do was upload the book and market it.

 

On being successful, I think it was nothing short of a divine plan. I am a fan of social media and have always been active on my blog (Flaming Sun has 5,91,008 hits as I am writing this); facebook, twitter and google+. Having worked for a couple of websites under the Network 18 umbrella, what I realise is that the only way to promote yourself via social media is to promote others.

 

  • Visit blogs and post “relevant” comments (believe me, people know when you post something inane without reading the article)
  • Share others’ posts when you find them relevant or interesting (just ‘like’ing is not enough; that does not help spread the word)
  • “Shout” about other authors’ works (you can be truthful and talk about those that you genuinely found interesting but take that extra few seconds to actually spread the word). When your twitter account is connected to facebook, the post automatically gets tweeted.
  • Create an author page on Amazon and encourage your friends to ‘like’ the page
  • Add all book reviews that you have written to Amazon page. The reviewer ranking works to an extent. I prefer to add on Amazon sites of all countries as the reviewer ranking varies with each one.
  • Most importantly, get yourself a blog tour. I get mine done through The Book Club and believe me when I say that sales soar after the tour. It’s a great help as many bloggers get together to review, spotlight and interview the author. Then there are those guest posts that are gaining popularity. People are keen to know what makes the author tick and a one-question plan works better for blog readers than a lengthy interview.

And the rest, as they say, is history J

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Thanks for sharing your views and experiences, Sundari. It’s lovely to know about your positive and encouraging attitude and I’m with you on this that authors helping authors can multiply visibility for all involved.

This post is a part of the tour for Sundari’s book, ‘The Runaway Bridegroom’

 

 

 

 
THE RUNAWAY BRIDEGROOM
by
Sundari Venkatraman
 
 

Blurb

 
Chanda Maheshwari’s family is shaken when her thirteen-year-old bridegroom Veerendra runs away immediately after the wedding. The eight-year-old child doesn’t even understand the impact on her life. Unable to face their neighbours and friends, the Maheshwaris move from their village to Jaipur and begin a new life in the city.
 
Fourteen years later, Chanda is studying in a Delhi College. She takes up a temporary job at RS Software Pvt. Ltd. and falls head-over-heels for the boss of the operation. But what about  Ranveer Singh? Is he interested in her?
 
Ranveer’s secretary Shikha is desperate to make him fall for her. All she wants is life-long security with a rich man. But it’s nerd Abhimanyu who keeps getting in the way. Abhi is Ranveer’s second-in-command and Shikha isn’t keen on him as she’s eyeing the main chance. 
 
When Ranveer appears to show interest in Chanda, she’s faced with a new problem. Astrologer Vidyasagar insists that she would get back with her husband Veerendra. Does anyone want to know what she wants? 
 
Chanda feels torn between the man she has fallen for and the family values that have been instilled in her. Will she ever find happiness? 
 
Buy @
 




Meet the Author
 
 
Sundari Venkatraman has authored four ebooks so far, The Runaway Bridegroom being the latest. Three of her books, namely, The Malhotra Bride; Meghna and The Runaway Bridegroom have all been self-published on Amazon under the banner of Flaming Sun. All three books are regularly seen on Amazon’s Top 100 Bestsellers’ Contemporary Romances list. 
 
A great fan of Mills & Boon romances over the past four decades, Sundari has always believed in ‘Happily Ever Afters’ and all her books promise happy endings. 
 
The Runaway Bridegroom talks about ‘Child Marriage’, an evil perpetrated even in the 21st century in a country like India. While a large number of the country’s population live in the cities and lead modern lives, there are many who follow old customs unaware of the negative impact on the lives of the younger generation. 
 
The book is a work of fiction and of course does not preach. The author has but made an attempt to bring this ancient custom to the eyes of the modern public around the world while bringing a simple solution to the protagonists, the victims of child marriage. 
 
“I hope you enjoy reading the book as much as I loved writing it,” says Sundari Venkatraman. 
 
You can stalk her @
         
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 Blog hosted by Summerita Rhayne, author of sensual romance, Against All Rules